05 November 2018 last updated at 12:35 GMT
 
Mark Taylor steps down from Cricket Australia board of directors
Monday 05 November 2018

Former Aussie Test captain Mark Taylor has announced his decision to step down from Cricket Australia’s board of directors. The opening batsman had been the longest-serving director on the Cricket Australia board with more than 13 years in the job.

 

His announcement on Monday follows former chairman David Peever’s decision to step down last week in the wake of the damning cultural reviews into Cricket Australia and the Australian cricket team.

Taylor received high-profile support to put his hand up for the vacant chairman position but has instead decided to walk away.

 

Taylor confirmed his resignation at a press conference at the SCG on Monday afternoon.

Taylor said he had “got to the end” after a difficult 18 months where the Australian Cricketers Association and Cricket Australia administrators went to war during the Memorandum of Understanding pay dispute. He said he got to a point recently where he was torn between nominating for the chairmanship or walking away to allow a fresh face to replace him.

 

“I’ve just got to the end,” Taylor said. “The last 18 months have been taxing. Really taxing. Particularly the last six months.

 

“It’s taken its toll on me. In the last two weeks, even more so and I’ve got to the stage where I don’t think I can give any more. I’ve lost the energy, and I think it’s time for somebody else to step up and fill my shoes.”

 

He admitted he was put in an awkward position during the players’ pay dispute and regrets not being able to mend the relationship between the union and Cricket Australia’s executive team.

“I was so disappointed with the MOU,” he said.

“I was disappointed that I didn’t do more. I was disappointed that we all could have done more.”

Taylor released his letter of resignation on Monday where he again made it clear that the strained relationship between players an administrators was behind his decision to move on.

“Following on from the events in March this year that rocked the cricketing world, and the ongoing damage this created for our game, including vital employer-employee relationships, my principle brief has been to work hard at fostering and restoring a workable, meaningful and respectful understanding between Cricket Australia and the Australian Cricketers Association, especially at a time when both parties were still recovering from the prolonged spirited, vigorous, and, sometimes toxic MoU negotiations back to mid-2017,” he wrote.

 

He said he regrets announcing his resignation while the game continues to crash from one crisis to the next — but admitted his mind was made up weeks ago.

Taylor also singled out Aussie women’s cricketer Alex Blackwell and former Aussie cricketers Belinda Clark and Simon Katich as favourable options to replace him on the board.

Taylor was on Sunday accused by Aussie cricket legend Ian Chappell of being a token “window dressing” cricketing presence on the Cricket Australia board.

 

Speaking on ABC’s 7.30 last week, Chappell called for cricket nous and experience to take priority over commercial awareness at the highest level of the governing body.

Taylor swatted away Chappell’s suggestion when they came face to face on Channel 9’s Sports Sunday.

Taylor immediately withdrew his name from consideration to replace Peever at the helm of Australian cricket last week citing his commitments with Channel 9 as being too burdensome.

 

 

Taylor admits it was “ludicrous” for Peever to be reappointed Cricket Australia chairman just days before the damning review findings were released.

Taylor said it had been a “horrific week” for Australian cricket and for him personally.

Asked on Sunday whether it was “ludicrous” to reappoint Peever, Taylor said: “In hindsight, yes.

“I don’t think there is anything too scurrilous about the timing of the report, I’m on the subcommittee.

“(But) it would have been better pushing the AGM back a week to give the states and everyone a chance to have their say, get it out there and then say (to Peever) do you want to re-apply?”

But Taylor aimed the Australian Cricketers Association (ACA), claiming it was driving a new wedge between the players and the CA hierarchy by renewing its call for an end to the player bans.

 

The ACA called for them to be lifted immediately after the independent review found CA’s “win at all costs” mentality was partly responsible for the sandpaper scandal in the Cape Town Test.

Captain Steve Smith and his deputy David Warner were banished for a year — until March — while batsman Bancroft was sidelined for nine months.

Taylor said the ACA’s demands had further strained relations between players and the governing body as they tried to rebuild from bitter pay negotiations.

“I’ve worked tirelessly over the past 12 months to try and get a better relationship with the cricketers and the board of Cricket Australia,” Taylor said.

“I was disappointed ... only 22 hours after the release of the findings ... the ACA wanted the bans reduced.

“I don’t even think they actually asked the players if they wanted that done, so the three players have now got to follow in behind them (ACA).

“That puts the Cricketers Association and Cricket Australia at odds straight away.

“Once again, in the words of (review boss Simon) Longstaff, that’s win at all costs.

“The cost will be the three players in the middle, and their culture and their mental health.”

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